TROJANS GIRLS' SOCCER: Trojans tie CardinalsWORTHINGTON – Following a missed Fairmont opportunity on the Worthington net, the Trojan girls’ soccer team moved the ball up field quickly as Ana Castillo found the back of the net with 15:36 remaining in regulation to tie Tuesday’s match at Trojan Field.
By: Lance Knutson, Worthington Daily Globe
WORTHINGTON – Following a missed Fairmont opportunity on the Worthington net, the Trojan girls’ soccer team moved the ball up field quickly as Ana Castillo found the back of the net with 15:36 remaining in regulation to tie Tuesday’s match at Trojan Field.
Castillo’s goal equalized the scoring of the match at 1-1 and the two sides battled for the remainder of regulation and through two 5-minute overtime periods without any more scoring for the draw.
“I was really happy to make that goal,” Castillo said. “I didn’t think it was going to go in, but I was out in front of (the goalie) and I stayed focused to make it in.”
Leading up to the equalizer, Trojan senior midfielder Lydia Kemper threaded a pass up field to senior forward Dayana Fuentes-Martinez.
Fuentes-Martinez then tapped the ball ahead to Castillo, who got around the Fairmont defenders for a 1-on-1 shot at Cardinal goalkeeper Alex Christianson.
Castillo fired an initial shot that the Cardinal keeper turned aside with her hands, but allowed a rebound out front that the Trojan sophomore striker gathered in and rifled into the corner of the net to knot the score.
“I was very proud of her for following up with that shot and not giving up when the goalie got it,” WHS head coach Emily Ahlquist said. “I tell the girls all the time to crash the net until the goalie has it covered up and that’s what Ana did there.”
Following the equalizer, neither side was able to mount much pressure on the opponent’s net and mostly battled in the midfield through the end of regulation and the first overtime frame.
In the second overtime, the Trojans gained an early free kick that gave the hosts some good looks at the net.
Senior midfielder Whitney Coriolan sent the free kick in towards net, which the visitors knocked over the goal line, giving the Trojans a corner kick just over a minute into the period.
The Cardinals were able turn away the first corner attempt, but the Trojans were able to win another corner out of the opportunity.
However, Fairmont turned away the second corner attempt without much of a challenge from WHS.
“They cleared them out well and that’s what they are supposed to do,” Ahlquist said of the late-game corners. “We couldn’t get to the ball before they did on the corners.”
The Cardinals used the missed Trojan opportunity to take control of the ball and mount some late pressure on the Trojan net and keeper Alivia Rowley.
Rowley blocked several chances as the visitors ramped up the pressure in the game’s closing minutes.
“Alivia had amazing saves for us all night,” Ahlquist said. “I was really proud of her. I told her ‘Superman, Be Superman’ in there and that’s what she did. She really kept us in the game with some nice saves in the second overtime.”
The senior keeper stood her ground in the closing minutes and the Cardinals were unable to break the tie.
“Their goalkeeper did a good job of having good range in the net,” Fairmont head coach Matt Nielsen said. “She made good decisions in net all night.”
The only blemish Rowley had was late in the first half when the Cardinals were awarded a free kick near midfield. Lexi Johnson booted the free kick up to Sierra Schultz, who raced past the WHS defenders and kicked in the game’s first goal in net with 2:12 showing before halftime.
Rowley turned aside several Fairmont chances before that, while WHS received some good looks at the net in the first half on shots from Castillo, Kemper and Coriolan.
With the visitors taking the 1-0 score into the intermission, the Trojans received their best shot at tying the game 2:30 into the second half when senior forward Alina Keoduangsy was awarded a penalty kick.
Christianson stymied the penalty shot and WHS came away empty handed and trailed by one until Castillo scored later in the period.
“There was no clear cut control during the game,” Nielsen said of the evenly-fought contest. “I thought we really outplayed them at times in the first half. But I was disappointed that we couldn’t keep it up and I thought we kind of let off the pedal towards the end of the first half. In the second half, we couldn’t crack through. We hit a pipe, we hit it high, we hit it low – we hit in everywhere but in the onion bag and sometimes that’s just how it goes.”
While Fairmont (2-3-1) was disappointed to come away with a draw after striking first in the contest, Ahlquist was pleased with how the Trojans battled to get back in a physical contest.
“I’m very proud of how hard and strong the girls played in a very physical game,” Ahlquist said. “We stayed strong and didn’t give up when the other side was being physical.”
The draw moves the Trojans’ record to 2-4-1. WHS travels to New Ulm Sept. 18.
FHS 1 0 – 1
WHS 0 1 – 1
Trojan boys fall 8-0 to Mankato West
MANKATO — The Worthington boys’ soccer team lost their second game of the season after falling 8-0 to Mankato West Monday in Mankato.
“Overall, it was a disappointing loss,” WHS coach Smitty Ektnitphong said. “We saw a lot of good things from Mankato in the match. They worked better as a team than we did.”
Mankato West scored four goals in the first and second halves with their first two goals coming before the 26 minute mark of the first. The next two goals of the first half came 15 minutes apart, putting the Trojans down 4-0 at halftime.
“In the first 10 minutes we had three good chances on goal,” Ektnitphong said. “And even with all the goals, our defense played pretty well. There wasn’t much they could do when they were out numbered by Mankato on most of those goals.”
Mankato West scored their fifth goal at the 22 minute mark in the second half and then picked up their last three goals in the final eight minutes of the match.
“I thought we would be ready for this game,” Ektnitphong said. “We put up sustained pressure for the first 10 minutes, but then it all went away. I reminded the kids that they can’t stop putting on the pressure.”
In the first half, Mankato West only outshot the Trojans 7-5. However, the second half was more lop-sided, with Mankato West taking 11 shots to Worthington’s one.
“The difference was that Mankato West worked well as a group and we didn’t,” Ektnitphong said. “We didn’t put in any of our three chances in the first half. We have been having problems finishing, but we will continue to work on these things. Either we will get back to work or it will break us.”
The Trojans boys’ soccer team (3-2) heads Edgerton today to take on Southwest Christian.
“Our goalie Kody Honius well for us even with all the goals they scored,” Ektnitphong said. “He came right out and challenged all of the close shots he faced. Victor Mesa also did well for us. He was getting chances and played a well-rounded game.”
Mankato West 1 0 – 1
Trojans 0 1 – 1